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Monday, May 14, 2007

Buttercups and Bluebells

May is one of my favorite months of the year. Everything is green and growing, and the weather is about as perfect as it gets in this part of the world. I have revived my daily walking habit that got stuffed in the closet over winter and it is now warm enough to walk earlier in the morning than I did in April.
My walk this morning was no longer than usual but it took me back 50 years when I noticed some Buttercups blooming along the way. Just like that, I was nine years old again and playing in the meadow at home. This time of year the meadow was full of Buttercups and the creek bank was blue with Bluebells. I picked great handfuls of them to take into the house.
Our meadow was largely populated by gentle sheep in the summer and usually a safe place for me to play. In the back half of the meadow was the brush pile. Daddy put the tree trimmings there and eventually burned them when the pile grew large. One year when the brush pile was just beginning to grow again, I made a play house out there. I arranged the branches and sticks to mark of the walls and rooms of a "log house." The meadow "magically" became a prairie, the Buttercups and Bluebells were the wildflowers, and I was a pioneer as I re-enacted the Laura Ingalls Wilder books I had been reading.
I can see now that my love affair with history began 50 years ago when History was added to the subjects I studied at school. I'm sure my imagined life as a pioneer woman did not come close to reality. I feel sorry for children who play video games instead of using their imaginations to create their own entertainment. They are cheated of the pleasure of innocent childhood dreams. I'm glad I am living in this century but also glad my memory could take me back a half century to that meadow filled with Buttercups and Bluebells.

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